What is a Sustainable Community?
A sustainable community is one that seeks to create a culture whose way of life can continue indefinitely into the future while maintaining the integrity of the ecological system upon which it is based. “Sustainability” is often used in the environmental movement since the vast majority of our present technological systems are not sustainable ecologically. Many sustainable communities however extend this concept to include social, economic and cultural sustainability as well. When they do – we consider them ecovillages. Ecovillages strive to be sustainable communities – and as the graphic below shows – sustainability is not necessarily a static goal nor does it represent the pinnacle of being an ecovillage.
What is a Regenerative Community?
A regenerative community takes sustainability one step further – with the essential realization that in addition to our systems and practices being sustainable indefinitely – they need to be contributing to the integrity, diversity and collective intelligence of the systems upon which they are based. Permaculture is the practice of humans working with Nature to co-create natural systems that inherently increase in bio-diversity and ecological integrity while also – as a natural result – providing food, raw materials and shelter for humans – not as the primary output but as an integral result of increasing ecological integrity for all species and the Earth itself.
What is a Transformational Learning Community?
Many new groups are forming as “learning communities” – or “communities of practice”. These groups are drawn together in the study of many of the essential elements of our shift to a sustainable, regenerative future. We consider them “transformational” because either the body of practice and knowledge they are bringing forth is transformational for humanity at this time or the members of the learning community experience transformational growth by being part of the community.
What about Indigenous Groups, Transition Town Groups, Church Groups, or Sustainability Projects?
To us they are all “communities of intent”. First People’s Groups or Traditional Villages were the first ecovillages and we have much to learn from them. VillageLab wishes to support all groups working toward a sustainable, thriving, culturally diverse and positive future. All these groups have so much to offer and teach and we see them all as potential partners and recipients of support.